Critics Blast FBI For Using Anti-Terrorism Tools Against Parents Protesting School Board Policies

Despite the FBI’s denials, two members of Congress say a whistleblower from inside the agency provided evidence that parents protesting school policies are targeted.

Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Mike Johnson (R-LA) say that it appears Attorney General Merrick Garland has been misleading on the issue. The two sent a letter last week to Garland outlining their evidence, which they say came from “brave whistleblowers.”

Jordan laid out the evidence on the news program “Sunday Morning Futures.”

The congressman alleged that the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division misused a threat tag created to coordinate information about terrorism cases. That tag was then applied, Jordan told the interviewer, to over two dozen cases of parents opposed to various school board policies.

Last September, the National School Boards Association asked the White House to implement the Patriot Act against certain parents. The request not only covered acts of violence towards the boards, but also perceived “intimidation” over objections to COVID-19 policies.

Within less than a week, the Department of Justice directed the FBI to investigate the “threats.”

One month later, AG Garland told Congress that the DOJ did not use antiterrorism tools against the parents. He claimed to be “unable to imagine” a situation where the Patriot Act would be implemented or parents labeled as “domestic terrorists.”

However, the FBI’s National Threat Operations Center operated a hotline for tips on parents’ actions at school board meetings. Further, Jordan and Johnson cite an internal email instructing agents to label investigations and assessments with the threat tag “EDUOFFICIALS.”

That specific threat tag, according to the whistleblower, was used for investigations in every region of the nation. It also was attached to probes into every type of educational setting.

One mother was reported as a threat for owning a gun and belonging to “Moms for Liberty.” The person who phoned in the tip said the mother belonged to a “right-wing group.” The FBI investigation did not turn up a threat.

Parents are clearly and rightfully upset over issues from masking and critical race theory to gender identity instruction for small children. Free speech and protest rights are explicitly enshrined in the Constitution, unlike many the left are obsessed with. The FBI should clearly know this.